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50-State Comparison Tracks School Leader Certification, Preparation

A new resource developed by the Education Commission of the States (ECS) offers a 50-state comparison of school leader certification and preparation programs, along with individual state profiles.

As more attention turns to the ways in which school leaders are prepared and certified, particularly in light of the impact school leaders have on student learning, states are evaluating and developing policies to strengthen and improve the quality of school leaders. ECS conducted the 50-state assessment of school leader policies and identified the following key takeaways:

Radio Interviews Spotlight ‘Nevada Leads,’ Advocacy, Innovation in Teacher Prep

AACTE members Melissa Burnham and Jafeth Sanchez of the University of Nevada Reno were featured guests on a recent Education Talk Radio show, discussing the “Nevada Leads” principal preparation initiative with their district partner Salwa Jafi. Other guests included AACTE’s Deborah Koolbeck, highlighting current advocacy work in Washington, and Interim Dean Vanessa Anton and Interim Provost Deb Landry of Northeastern State University (OK), who described their award-winning Robotics Academy of Critical Engagement (RACE) program.

The interviews took place in person with host Larry Jacobs at the AACTE 70th Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, last month.

April 18 Webinar to Explore Mental Health Supports for Principals

This article has been updated to reflect new presenter information.

On Wednesday, April 18, AACTE will host a free webinar on principal leadership, supported by The Wallace Foundation as part of the Association’s ongoing partnership to disseminate the latest research and practice innovations in principal preparation. Please join us from 3:00-3:45 p.m. EDT for Leveraging Community Resources to Strengthen Clinical Practice: Mental Health Support for School Leaders.

New principals must not only learn to seamlessly integrate curriculum, lead change, and manage personnel; they must also become first responders in times of tragedy and grief counselors, while supporting their own mental health in high-stress jobs. This webinar will discuss –

Educational Leadership Preconference Focuses on Interaction of Policy, Practice

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On February 28, AACTE hosted a daylong preconference workshop titled “Strengthening the Pipeline to Transform the Principalship,” sponsored by The Wallace Foundation. The event, held just prior to the 70th AACTE Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, was attended by PK-12 and higher education leaders from across the nation and engaged participants in presentations and conversation on educational leadership through the lenses of policy and practice.

The agenda was broken into two thematic segments. The first segment highlighted how policy, partnerships, and resources influence strategies to renew principal preparation programs. The second included presentations about key policies that influence the renewal of principal preparation programs.

Webinar to Discuss Preparing Principals to Partner With Legal, Social Services

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On Wednesday, March 21, AACTE will host a free webinar on principal leadership, supported by The Wallace Foundation as part of the Association’s ongoing partnership to disseminate the latest research and practice innovations in principal preparation. Please join us from 3:00-3:45 p.m. EDT for Leveraging Community Resources to Strengthen Clinical Practice for New Principals: Partnering with Legal and Social Services.

Difficult and changing situations with students and their families require principals to broaden their support network beyond school resources. The panelists on this webinar will discuss scenarios and possible resources available within the community. They will also share ideas for making intentional connections with community partners.

Supporting Principals in Managing Security: Investigation Techniques for School Safety

The authors are organizers and moderators of the principal preparation webinar series for AACTE.

On February 21, AACTE will kick off the new interactive webinar series, “Leveraging Community Resources to Strengthen Clinical Practice for New Principals,” supported by The Wallace Foundation. These free webinars are designed to build on the Wallace Foundation’s 2016 report Improving University Principal Preparation Programs: Five Themes From the Field, which highlights the need for realistic clinical experiences in quality preparation programs.

Leveraging Community Resources to Strengthen Clinical Practice for New Principals

This spring, AACTE will present a new webinar series, “Leveraging Community Resources to Strengthen Clinical Practice for New Principals,” supported by The Wallace Foundation as part of the Association’s ongoing partnership to disseminate the latest research and practice innovations in principal preparation.

As the roles and responsibilities of a principal continuously evolve, this free webinar series will explore how these changes impact principals’ day-to-day work and how to support new principals in navigating challenges successfully. The four webinars in the series build on the Wallace Foundation’s 2016 report Improving University Principal Preparation Programs: Five Themes From the Field, which highlights the need for realistic clinical experiences in quality preparation programs.

Strengthening the Principal Pipeline: Free Preconference Event at #AACTE18

If you are looking for an opportunity to engage in a dynamic day of discussion and information sharing about the preparation of school leaders, look no further. With the generous support of The Wallace Foundation, AACTE is excited to again be able to host a free, day-long preconference event before AACTE’s Annual Meeting to share ideas and issues focused on strengthening the principal pipeline.

Strengthening the Pipeline to Transform the Principalship will be held Wednesday, February 28, 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the Marriott Baltimore Inner Harbor. Participants will draw upon emergent Wallace Knowledge in School Leadership as well as presentations on emergent policy issues, initiatives to improve practice, and exemplars of practice in educational leadership to explore approaches and address persistent problems in principal preparation.

AACTE Tech Committee Joins Fall Summit, Plans Preconference Symposium for #AACTE18

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Members of AACTE’s Committee on Innovation and Technology at the 2017 National Technology Leadership Summit in Washington, DC

AACTE and its Committee on Innovation and Technology (I&T) are committed to being a leading voice in the preparation of educators to integrate technology within teaching and learning. The latest examples of this commitment include active participation in the 2017 National Technology Leadership Summit (NTLS) and plans for a preconference symposium at the 2018 AACTE Annual Meeting.

AACTE hosted the 18th annual NTLS September 28-29 at the Association’s headquarters building in Washington, DC. AACTE President/CEO Lynn M. Gangone welcomed NTLS attendees, acknowledging the importance of the work to be done during the summit. Six members of the I&T committee attended the event, including Chair Arlene Borthwick (National Louis University, IL), Jon Clausen (Ball State University, IN), Elizabeth Finsness (Minnesota State University-Mankato), Charles Hodges (Georgia Southern University), Lara Luetkehans (Indiana University of Pennsylvania), and Guy Trainin (University of Nebraska-Lincoln).

What Supports Are Needed for New School Leaders? Discuss in Dec. 14 Webinar

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On Thursday, December 14, AACTE will host a free webinar, supported by The Wallace Foundation, on principal leadership. Please join us from 3:00-4:00 p.m. EST for “Principals as Transformation Leaders: Support for New Leaders.”

Although university support for new school leaders often ends with graduation, novice principals need ongoing professional development and can benefit from continued connections with their preservice preparation programs. The new leaders serving as panelists on this webinar will offer perspectives on their preservice principal preparation and ideas for creating ongoing systems of support. Each panelist is a recent participant in a new leadership institute at Colorado State University, developed in partnership with AACTE and the Wallace Foundation, that convened early-career principals to identify practices and support structures needed for graduates beyond university-based preparation programs. Outcomes from these institute discussions will help guide curriculum reform to better prepare school principals and will also inform universities on how to keep the connection with alumni vibrant and relevant.

Webinar to Discuss High-Quality Preservice Preparation for School Leaders

On Thursday, November 30, AACTE will host a free webinar on preparing principals for effective leadership, with support from The Wallace Foundation. Please join us from 3:00-4:00 p.m. EST for Principals as Transformation Leaders: High-Quality Preservice Preparation.

Considering the impact of school leaders on student achievement, principal preparation programs have a huge responsibility to best prepare individuals to lead our nation’s schools. Yet a recent report by the Wallace Foundation, Improving University Principal Preparation Programs: Five Themes From the Field, indicates there is concern that many university-based programs need curricular redesign and stronger connections to school districts. The panelists on this webinar will discuss the need for reform in principal preparation and examples of quality innovations.

Webinar Nov. 9: How Principals Build, Sustain Healthy School Cultures

Please join us Thursday, November 9, at 3:00 Eastern for the third free webinar in the series we’ve organized for AACTE on principal leadership, with support from The Wallace Foundation.

Great school culture starts with strong leadership and builds a context for excellence in every area of the school. Fostering open relationships at all levels, principals are at the heart of building and sustaining a healthy school culture. This webinar, Principals as Transformation Leaders: Changing School Cultures, will feature school leaders who have successfully worked to create a positive school culture that promotes learning and acceptance for all.

How Do High-Performing Education Systems Develop Their Principals?

A new international-comparison study sheds light on important factors in the development of school leaders in selected "high-performing" systems around the world. The study, sponsored by the National Center on Education and the Economy’s Center on International Education Benchmarking, highlights commonalities in principal preparation among the systems whose students scored highest on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) survey: Hong Kong, Ontario, Shanghai, and Singapore.

Australian researcher Ben Jensen authored the report, Preparing to Lead: Lessons in Principal Development From High-Performing Education Systems. Its overarching message is that successful education systems provide current and future school leaders with preparation that is specifically tailored to the real-world problems and contexts they will face in their work environments.

“The best programs combine a detailed understanding of principals’ roles and responsibilities with a deep grounding in the system’s particular philosophy and objectives for how schools get better,” Jensen said.

Congratulations to National Distinguished Principals, AACTE Members Who Prepared Them

In celebration of National Principals Month, the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) announced the 2017 Class of National Distinguished Principals and recognized them at an event in Washington, DC, October 12-13. AACTE is proud to congratulate the honorees and to note that nearly all of the principals recognized by the program were prepared at AACTE member institutions.

This year’s distinguished principals completed their preparation at the following AACTE member institutions:

Webinar to Explore Principals as Transformation Leaders in Urban, Rural, and Alternative Settings

On Thursday, October 26, AACTE will host the second in a series of free webinars we’ve organized on principal leadership, sponsored by the Wallace Foundation. Please join us 3:00-4:00 p.m. EDT for Principals as Transformation Leaders: Serving Urban, Rural, and Alternative Settings.

This webinar will feature school leaders who face unique challenges based on school settings. While we know principals can significantly impact student achievement in all situations, the challenges of a specific environment can require unique skills. Presenters will share aspects of their work, including:

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